LUXEMBOURG (Reuters) – The European Union’s order for Apple (AAPL.O) to pay 13 billion euros ($14 billion) in back taxes to Ireland “defies reality and common sense,” the U.S. company said on Tuesday, as it launched a legal challenge against the 2016 ruling.
The iPhone maker also accused the executive European Commission of using its powers to combat state aid “to retrofit changes to national law,” in effect trying to change the international tax system and in the process creating legal uncertainty for businesses.
Apple’s arguments at the General Court, Europe’s second-highest, came after the EU executive in 2016 said the tech giant benefited from illegal state aid due to two Irish tax rulings which artificially reduced its tax burden for over two decades.
The case is key to European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager’s crackdown on sweetheart deals for multinationals, a campaign which has also led to action against Starbucks (SBUX.O), Fiat (FCHA.MI),…
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